(MENAFN - Arab Times) The British Business Forum (BBF) last week held its November members' meeting at the Costa Del Sol hotel. The meeting was attended by a discerning audience of selected business membership and visiting business guests to Kuwait. Graham Kenny, BBF Vice-Chairman opened the meeting by welcoming members and their guests and issuing some notifications for BBF forthcoming calendar before introducing the guest speaker for the evening - Arjan de Draaijer, director in charge of KPMG's Global Sustainability Practice based in the Netherlands. The theme of the presentation was Sustainability in the Gulf and its application to Kuwait. Draaijer introduced the terms and concepts of the 'Sustainability Megaforces' matrix which apply throughout the world and the interconnectivity of such onto the business market.
He spoke in particular about the elements of Climate Change, Water Scarcity, Energy and Fuel, Food Scarcity and Urbanisation, which he identified as the impacts for Kuwait. It is recognized now, he said, that there is a critical mass of business leaders who recognize that change is required and not only to enhance business 'green' credentials but to explore and penetrate new markets. Whilst there is an elemenat of maturity in certain geographical locations that sustainability is a contributor to a company's shareholder value thee is also a realization that the emerging markets with a voracious appetite for natural, human and manufactured resources also need to quickly adopt the sustainability policies and measures that have taken traditional western businesses a number of years to embrace, he added.
The presentation closed with a discussion of the question 'What you can do' and to assess the need to understand, integrate, create and communicate the issues and the solutions for future business and world health. This was followed by a busy question and answer interactive session between Arjan and the audience which continued over dinner during which time opportunity was afforded for further topic discussion on the issue that affects us all in both business and personal life. Draaijer is a specialist in the field of GRI reporting, the Global Reporting Initiative promotes economic sustainability and produces one of the world's most widely used standards for sustainability, as a measure of an organizations commitment and performance to economic, environmental, social and governance standards. Widely adopted by over 5,700 of the world leaders in business such organizations in Kuwait include NBK, Zain, EQUATE, Agility, Burgan bank and Kuwait petroleum International. Draaijer himself includes Shell, KLM, Phillips, SABIC and Toyota amongst his client base of organizations.